Run it Back … Austin Hill returns to Daytona International Speedway (DIS), the site of his first career NASCAR Camping World Truck Series victory, for the third consecutive year behind the wheel of the No. 16 United Rentals Toyota Tundra for HRE. Hill kicks off his fourth full-time Camping World Trucks campaign coming off a sixth-place finish in the 2020 standings and aims to build on last season’s achievements to earn his first-career berth in the Championship 4.
Continue the Excellence … The 2020 campaign saw Hill and the United Rentals team exhibit consistent excellence over the 23-race schedule. Hill led all full-time Camping World Trucks competitors in average finish (9.0), top-five’s (11), and top-10’s (17), all of which were career-high marks for the 26-year-old wheelman. He and crew chief Scott Zipadelli are continuing their quest for a title together and look to extend that level of excellence from ‘20 to DIS and through the entire ’21 season.
Stellar at Superspeedways… The wildly unpredictable nature of superspeedway racing can produce unexpected results, but certain drivers have a knack for consistent performances on NASCAR’s largest tracks, including Hill. In four previous starts at the “World Center of Racing”, Hill has three finishes of 11th or better, including two top-10’s and his landmark victory in 2019 in his debut with HRE. He’s led 50 laps in the past two Camping World Trucks races at DIS, including 11 last February. The Georgia native also collected a stage win at Talladega Superspeedway last October and has two top-10 finishes at DIS’ sister facility.
Chassis Selection … Zipadelli and the HRE team have prepared chassis No. 012 for the third-consecutive superspeedway event. Hill most recently drove this United Rentals Tundra to a stage victory at Talladega last fall and led 11 laps en route to a sixth-place finish at DIS last February. Since one practice session is on the docket, the HRE team has also prepared chassis No. 002 as a backup, which was victorious at DIS in 2019.
Tune In … The first on-track activity for the Camping World Trucks competitors will be carried live on FOX Sports 1 on Thursday evening with practice at 5:30 p.m. ET. FS1’s coverage continues with qualifying on Friday at 3:00 p.m. ET followed by NASCAR Raceday at 7:00 pm ET, and culminates with the NextEra Energy 250 green flag at 7:30 p.m. ET. Stay connected with the HRE team by following @Hattori_Racing on Twitter, @hattoriracing on Instagram, and Hattori Racing Enterprises on Facebook.
Austin Hill Quote:On kicking off his third season with HRE at Daytona:“I’m ready to get back to racing and I think our whole United Rentals team is too. All the guys at HRE worked extremely hard in the offseason and we’re probably more prepared than we’ve ever been. We had a strong season last year and had a lot of speed most weeks, but we certainly want to get to victory lane more this year. Over the past two years we’ve had a pretty strong superspeedway program and have been near the front more often than not. We try to race as aggressive as we can to get as many stage points as possible because Daytona is a fairly short race. It’s important to be up front all night to hopefully stay in front of the chaos. It’s going to be important for us to execute the first two stages on Friday and put ourselves in a good position to be around at the end to have a shot at it.”